When the first snow flurries hit the ground is when we officially enter soup season. There’s nothing better than warming the soul with a homemade bowl of soup. French Onion Soup has a special place in our hearts because it requires a central technique for good cooking—caramelizing onions. Browning or carmelizing onions is an exercise in patience and expands basic cookery chops in building flavor. It’s a cooking tenet applicable anywhere but should be mastered here in all its melty goodness.
FRENCH ONION SOUP
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
3 sweet onions, thinly sliced
2 cups beef stock
2 cups chicken stock
1 cup white wine
1 tbsp all-purpose flour
Bouquet garni; thyme, bay leaf, and parsley
Pinch of kosher salt
Pinch of freshly milled black pepper
1 cup grated Gruyère
Add butter to a large pan, fold in onions and slowly saute until carmelized under low to medium heat. Carmelizing onion takes time and patience. Let the onions sit and stir occasionally to avoid sticking or burning. The onions should have a thick and syrupy consistency when ready, approximately 20 minutes.
Once the onions are caramelized add wine and bring up to a low simmer for five minutes. Slowly fold in the flour to thicken the mixture.
Warm broth over low heat in a separate pot and add to the onions slowly. Add bouquet garni, a pinch of salt and pepper, and bring to a low simmer.
Prepare the oven broiler. Cut four slices from the baguette. Place four oven-proof containers on a baking sheet. Fill the containers with soup and add bread slices atop each container. Top each with grated Gruyère and broil in the oven for three and four minutes. Serve warm.
Story and Recipe by Gabe Gomez/ Photography by Sheri Silver